The Boomerang Club donate Wiis to tenants of the Servite Housing Association (renamed Caledonia Housing Association) and local young people are encouraged to volunteer to teach the older generation how to play games such as bowling on the Wiis. Roisin Isaacs was Channel Four’s ‘Secret Millionaire’, who abandoned her hot-tub down south and headed for Dundee.
This is the series where, in each episode, a different multi-millionaire searches for people whose lives can be changed for the better. Millionaire Roisin started out as a nurse, and went on to make her fortune in the health care industry. After the episode was filmed she returned to Dundee to open new premises for the Boomerang Club as she was so impressed by its aim to create a heart in the community. She donated £7,500 towards the lease of new premises.
For the uninitiated Wii (pronounced “wee”), is a video game console from Nintendo. It runs Wii and GameCube software and features a wireless motion sensing controller that looks like a TV remote rather than a game controller. The unit is strapped to the wrist and swung like a tennis racket, golf club or other sports equipment.
Two Servite schemes, Martingale Gardens and Joan Bartlett House, have been enjoying this new pastime; and one tenant admitting to being totally hooked. The games are contested with such effort, they have also become physical workouts! Martingale and Joan Bartlett House have been chosen to lead the way; and the plan is to extend the project to include more local Servite schemes.
Successful intergenerational communication.
The project has created great social interactions. Tenants thoroughly enjoy the modern technology, which they may not have experienced otherwise. The young people benefit as their involvement counts towards awards recognition e.g. Prince’s Trust.
“It’s great to see the young people demonstrating Wii games to the tenants, including tenants from sheltered complexes. It is a positive step, with the team committed to providing services for all ages within the community. The intergenerational work carried out at the moment is just the start of many activities we aim to provide to break down the barriers that exist between generations.” Neil Ellis of Boomerang.
“Volunteering can be such a worthwhile and fulfilling experience. It has the added bonus of introducing our tenants to participative and fun activities that can be enjoyed across the age range.” Julie Cosgrove, Servite Chief Executive.